Unintended Bargaining in Marrakech


One evening in Marrakech, I was looking for pocket tissue and I found a woman street seller. I pointed at the entire pack to indicate that I wanted to buy the whole pack, but the lady kept telling me that it was 2 dirham each (USD$0.20). Two other vendors nearby saw us and came to help. They translated for us and told me that the 15+3 pack costed “two twenty dirham bills.” Since 18 x 2 = 36, I gave a face that was like “you are crazy” and turned away. The guys immediately said “TWENTY! TWENTY!” I hesitated because the lady was apparently whining, but the guys assured me that it’d be twenty and handed me the whole pack. So, I took it, gave one of the guys twenty dirhams and walked away quickly. I could hear the man and the lady arguing behind me…

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If it was not because my friend in Barcelona bragged about owning an electronic kettle, I wouldn’t have realized that it is not a common home appliance in an average Spanish household. (Right off the top of my head, I can’t think of any Chinese household without one…)

Curious, I asked my friends what’s its name in Spanish or how to ask for it at the store. They thought for a second and told me there is no name XD You can call it a “caldera,” like boiler, or just “kettle” (with Spanish accent =P)

Thinking back, I have stayed and visited at least 28 Spanish homes, and I have only encountered an electronic kettle THREE times. Two of them are from friends who learned about it when they lived abroad, and they like drinking tea more than coffee.

Certainly an electronic kettle is very convenient for tea making, but I don’t mind boiling water with a saucepan on the stovetop. Just don’t microwave water to make tea. Please.

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Plaza del Pilar at Night

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Aragon Pavilion


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Zaragoza Expo

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Found a Better Pool

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London Subway

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